Guest Blogger: J.F. Lewis
The winner of Jeremy's book is -- Ellory! Congrats, Ellory! Send me your snail mail info and I'll pass it along to J. Thanks to everyone who participated.
No. I’m kidding, we’ll actually be talking about werewolf and vampire dental practices, because -- I mean come on, who doesn’t find odontology fascinating? What? It has to do with writing paranormal fiction; I promise. Just bear with me.
One of the things that has always struck me about vampire fangs is where are they hiding in there? Are there hidden pockets? Do the existing teeth just get longer and more pointy? What? I know. I know. I’m weird, but then again I should be weird right? I write books about vampires, demons, gun slinging ghosts, and evangelical werewolves. But back to the teeth.
Another question that I’ve always had is: Does it hurt? If there are hidden pockets for the fangs, surely it feels a little weird to have the fangs push the other teeth around, right? And if not . . . why not? Vampires in the Void City universe definitely feel it when they pop their fangs. Sure it’s a feeling to which they become accustomed. The older the vampire, the less he or she would notice, but the first time it happens? Yowtch!
Which brings me around to werewolf dentistry.
When I sat down to work up the rules for my little world, I had originally planned to have the transformation from human to werewolf be painful, too, but then I stopped and thought. Since lycanthrope isn’t a curse in my universe, pain wasn't necessarily required. A vampire is something that was human. Sprouting fangs for them is unnatural. Of course it hurts. For a Void City werewolf, making the transformation is akin to getting home after a long day’s work and slipping into something more comfortable. The sharp nasty werewolf teeth push the human teeth out of the way, forcing them out of the mouth completely. The fingernails pop off releasing wolf claws in a process that is indescribably freeing. It feels good.
And it works. It makes sense, which is the writing topic that I'm touching on in my meandering way. The bigger the element of the paranormal in your fiction, the larger the burden becomes. It must make sense. It has to be consistent and you, as the writer, must know how it all works even if the reader doesn't get all of the nuts and bolts up front (or ever). As long as you've given it thought, then you may find that some details don't even have to be explained through exposition. You'll show them instinctively and Showing is almost universally always better than Telling.